hey_joe42
Registered User
Join date: Oct 2009
20 IQ
#1
So my Tascam US-122L seems to be crapping out on me. The line in jacks aren't working anymore, and the one mic jack just isn't working. Got alot of use out of the thing.

Now i'm looking for something to replace it but don't know what the difference between Audio interfaces and Mixers with USB output. I do recording, 2 inputs so far has done me okay, 4 inputs like a 4 channel mixer could get a bit of use as well.

But the biggest thing I used my tascam to jam with at night while my wife sleeps. I work shifts so I'm usually up late at night. A usb mixer would allow me to put my guitar, and the computer in there and then I can jam with my headphones on. But are they good for recording, or whats the differences?
AJScott
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
90 IQ
#2
With mixers, say you put 2 instruments or 8 microphones (say for drums) in your DAW they will usually come through as 1 input, and therefore harder to mix. Mixers are generally designed for live use, if you want to do recording an audio interface is the way to go.
Last edited by AJScott at Jan 18, 2013,
AcousticMetal99
A walking oxymoron
Join date: Apr 2011
191 IQ
#3
I think USB ones have 2 outs and 2 ins - as far as I know that can't be swapped to 4 outs sadly. So if you only need to record two channels at a time, it's fine - if you can overtrack parts. Also good for anything live where you want to capture the entire mix.
Depends on the audio input, but a PCI card or whatever can usually take up to 8 tracks at once I think. If the interface runs over USB though, it'll have the same issue as the mixer with USB.
AJScott
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
90 IQ
#4
Quote by AcousticMetal99

Depends on the audio input, but a PCI card or whatever can usually take up to 8 tracks at once I think. If the interface runs over USB though, it'll have the same issue as the mixer with USB.


Afraid you're wrong here, USB audio interfaces are not limited to 2 input and 2 outputs. I don't know if there even is a limit but there's USB interfaces with like 16 inputs. That's most I've seen.


Don't reccomend getting a PCI card, an audio interface is an external sound card as PCI cards have a habit of suffering from latency/lag.
lockwolf
Recording's AdBot/Dick
Join date: Jun 2007
100 IQ
#5
There are lots of mixers that do more than 2 channels in, its just usually by the time you find one of these that are good for both studio & live use, you're looking at $1000+ for a 16 channel board.

You can use both an interface or mixer for jamming late at night. You'd just load up a DAW & use an amp sim & backing track.


Edit:

Don't reccomend getting a PCI card, an audio interface is an external sound card as PCI cards have a habit of suffering from latency/lag


Actually, PCI Express cards (which most newer cards are) have much lower levels of latency. I know Pro Tools HD, which is run off a PCI Express Card, has about a latency of 2.1ms versus a USB 2.0 interface having around 8.3ms at a 96khz sample rate. Of course, my source is direct from Avid but still. Its just usually a PCI Express system costs way more than an interface to get setup.
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Last edited by lockwolf at Jan 18, 2013,
Bill43
I like it here
Join date: May 2003
220 IQ
#6
Quote by AJScott
Afraid you're wrong here, USB audio interfaces are not limited to 2 input and 2 outputs. I don't know if there even is a limit but there's USB interfaces with like 16 inputs. That's most I've seen.


Don't reccomend getting a PCI card, an audio interface is an external sound card as PCI cards have a habit of suffering from latency/lag.


That's an odd statement to make. I have 4 computers all with PCI cards feeding through a D8B. There's absolutely 0 latency. No lag... straight digital noiseless recordings. You can listen to any of my songs and hear for yourself. The link is in my sig.

hey_joe42
Registered User
Join date: Oct 2009
20 IQ
#7
One more question as you guys were very helpful. Audio Interfaces... are they the same thing as DI boxes? I'm just trying to figure out my favourite gutiar store online and they seem to have the interfaces in with the DI boxes, but some are labelled interfaces and others DI boxes and I'm not sure if there is a difference. I'm checking out Long and McQuade here in Canada.
lockwolf
Recording's AdBot/Dick
Join date: Jun 2007
100 IQ
#8
They aren't the same. An interface is meant to record audio to a PC, a DI is meant to switch a signal from high impedance to low impedance (or the other way around, I forget). A lot of Interfaces have DIs built into them but some are kinda meh in quality.
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